Thursday, October 6, 2011

40+ years ago ...

... I spent a year with the US Army in South Vietnam.  I enlisted in the Army in March 1968 and volunteered for service in South Vietnam, arriving there the last week of January 1969.  I wound up with the 221st Signal Company, Southeast Asia Pictorial Center, at Long Binh, with detachments spread across the country. After a few months of OJT in photography, I was moved to AV administration at our Detachment C at Tan Son Nhut AB near Saigon.  Guess I wasn't much of a still photo guy. What I was, was a very small and relatively unimportant part of a serious mission.  Mostly paperwork, occasionally field photography.

Last night I learned that there'll be a reunion of 221st vets, here in STL, in May of 2012.  I never went to any of my HS reunions but you can bet I'll be at this one.  Former CBS Radio exec Bob Fulstone was one of our LT's back then and is half of the "reunion committee."

Re: the unit patch -- 1LT Roger Hawkins interpreted the badge as follows: “The film strip speaks for itself. "Equis Mile Verbe" is Latin for "equals a thousand words." The dragon signifies Vietnam. The Fleur-di-lis is a traditional symbol of light.”

Word is that the 221st's most illustrious graduate might be there, too.